Monday, 19 May 2014

Gordon Willis (1931-2014)

I just heard that Gordon Willis has died. Since he was one of the most brilliant of cinematographers and has constantly dazzled me, he deserves respect and celebrations. He is particularly famous for his work with Woody Allen and Francis Ford Coppola but he also worked on several films directed by Alan J. Pakula, and would have been a natural creative partner for John Frankenheimer, although they never worked together. He made films between 1970 and 1997, and most of them are very good, some even better. He is known primarily for his interiors and Conrad Hall (another great cinematographer) called him "the Prince of Darkness". (He was not the only cinematographer with that nickname, Bruce Surtees was also called that for one, and John Alton might as well have been.) But it is not difficult to understand why. He was a master. R.I.P.

Klute (Alan J. Pakula 1971) In the background they are building World Trade Center.

Bad Company (Robert Benton 1972)

The Parallax View (Alan J. Pakula 1974)

Interiors (Woody Allen 1978)

Manhattan (Woody Allen 1979)


A scene from All the President's Men (Alan J. Pakula 1976).

1 comment:

  1. Willis even brought visual style to filmmakers whose work usually wasn't too distinguished formally, like Herbert Ross.